05/26/2021 Stephanie Benedict, JD, SHRM-CP - Senior Consultant, HR Services, AC Talent publications

COVID Workplace Update

As the pandemic presses on, pronouncements from the CDC, MIOSHA, and other health and safety organizations continue to evolve quickly.

What do these changes mean for the workplace?

Here are a few of the highlights fresh off of a MIOSHA webinar based on the updated CDC Guidelines and MIOSHA Emergency Rules.

Highlights

Remote workers can return to the office

The updated MIOSHA emergency rules have eliminated the rule that employees should work from home if their work duties can reasonably be completed remotely. Thus, employers are permitted to bring their workforces back to work to the extent the size of their workplace makes it practicable. The current guidelines are that buildings may have indoor gatherings of the greater of either 25 people or 50% of the fire marshall limits. If there are no existing fire marshall limits, the guidance is 30 people per 1,000 square feet. 

Unvaccinated employees must wear masks and maintain social distancing

Businesses must do their part to protect employees, their patrons, and their communities. The employer shall require any employee, except fully vaccinated persons, to wear face coverings when employees cannot consistently maintain 6 feet of separation from other individuals indoors in the workplace. 

Employers have been given lots of leeway to confirm vaccination status. It is fine to ask vaccination status, add the question to the daily screening, and to ask for and file a copy of an employee’s vaccination card.  

Signage regarding wearing masks should be adapted to read that non-vaccinated people are required to wear masks and maintain social distance. 

Daily screenings need to continue

Daily screening requirements are still in place. Any documents recording the results of the daily screening must be kept for 6 months. The requirement to monitor employee temperature has been removed, but if employers find that an effective mitigation plan, they are encouraged to maintain that protocol. 

Symptomatic employees or employees who have tested positive for COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status, shall not report to work.

The requirement remains to have a designated COVID-19 coordinator who is responsible for implementing any COVID-19 mitigation protocols and the preparedness response and illness plan. 

No need to have vaccinated employees quarantine after travel or close exposure

While fully vaccinated employees do not need to quarantine after travel or after a close exposure (as defined by the CDC), they do need to stay home if they are symptomatic or have a positive COVID test. 

Resources

MIOSHA Hotline

For specific workplace questions, MIOSHA has a hotline for employers at (855) 723-3219.

AC Talent

If your company has additional questions, or wants to talk with us about fractional HR, recruiting or project support, please connect with us via Info@AmyCellTalent.com.